Senior Spotlight: Elli Cryan, '18


Elli Cryan


Fairfax, VA


CAMS: Mathematical Biology

Activities on Campus:

  • Pointe Blank Dance Company 
  • Plant Biology Research 
  • Girl Scout Troop Leader

Describe Yourself in Three Words:  

Exuberant, Willful, Honest

Go-To Starbucks Order:

Tall Iced Green Tea

Favorite Book:

I love books that approximate dreams. Right now my favorite is Pictor’s Metamorphoses and Other Fantasies, which is a compilation of short stories by Hermann Hesse

Favorite Movie:  

Any 1980s teen movie.

What do you like to do in your free time?   

Dance, watch strange Netflix movies, knit, talk myself out of buying more apartment plants, eat popcorn with chocolate chips

What’s one thing on your bucket list?  

Go to space!

What is one of your favorite William and Mary memories?  

Williamsburg in the summer is very humid and quiet. A lot of my favorite William and Mary memories involve sitting around outside in the evenings and having long discussions about mostly irrelevant topics.   

What are you planning to do after graduation?  

I’m planning to start my PhD in Plant Biology, and I’m very excited about it!

What is one piece of advice you would give to freshmen?  

Happiness shouldn’t be a cost of education. Yeah, college is partially about preparing for the rest of your life, but these years are also part of your life. Make studying relaxing, and make your extracurricular time enjoyable.

What is your favorite thing about William and Mary?

The student body is the best thing about William and Mary. Most people I know give the same answer, but that’s because it’s true! People here are passionate and engaged in their learning, and they want to talk to about their niche fields of interest, and it’s awesome.

If you were President of the College for a day, what would you do?  

I would prohibit campus tree destruction (RIP Millington Holly Trees). This campus has really a diverse tree population thanks to efforts of a few Botany Professors in the later half of the 20th century. If you want to learn more about the trees on campus, the Biology website has a self-guided Campus Tour of Woody Species!